Kegs of gun powder

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By OLANREWAJU AKINFENWA

 

Reading the presentation of Alhaji Aliko Dangote, gives one the reason, albeit for the umpteenth time, why he is the richest African.

 

It was not the simplicity of the presentation devoid with high sounding words that makes business and economic issues no go areas for ordinary mortal; but the logic of the sequence of his presentation that highlights how the individual and the nation can benefit from the current recession in oil sector to diversify.

 

It was not as if he was saying a new thing at The Economist organised event, but it was how he said it. He gave simple examples that people could relate to – simple matters, such as, the distance from Lagos to Accra and Lagos to Abuja which clearly shows that the former is shorter with more population to cater for along the road.

 

But this write up is not about Dangote and his successes but a picture of the kegs of gun powder we are sitting on as a nation. And how we can borrow from the power of focus and clarity Dangote uses to serve his world of influence.

 

Boko Haram

The use of propaganda to show we are winning a war with an hydra headed evil that replaces one head as you are cutting it can only lull the nation into a false sense of relieve that when the evil of boko haram rebounds it will catch us napping and devastate our psyche that we may not recover as a people.

 

Do away with this propaganda. Confront it with all your might. Negotiate with them, if you must, but away with this delay.

 

Biafra

It is a wonder that we do not learn from history.

 

Why travel the same road that has given you unpleasant feelings and cost you a terrible loss, if there are other routes that will achieve the same or better result?

 

The civil war was a terrible period in the history of this country. We have been inundated many times about the folly of fighting another civil war. We have been told that it is difficult for a nation to survive two civil wars. But what is this that the administration of President Buhari is toying with.

 

Just the other day, Mr. President was quoted to have granted an interview to Al Jazeera, that “we will not tolerate Biafra, any longer”. It is folly to bandy words with your children. This breeds insults. The Biafran, as they would like to be called, fired back their salvo! “We will not tolerate Nigeria, any longer”

 

Advisers of Mr. President should train him in the art of governance and diplomacy. He should be tutored on strategic result and logical focus to achievement.

 

What is at stake here is ensuring the nation is at peace for meaningful development; hence that end is what Mr. President should be working at achieving not bandying of words with guys who are young enough to be his grand children.

 

Employ the services of seasoned negotiators and dialogue with these leaders of this group. Let them have their say and where those you employed have done their work diligently, then you, nay, the whole nation would have its way.

 

Bottled up anger or words give vents to brashness, address the issue of Biafra with all seriousness it deserves and let the nation be at peace. The drama at the court, I will not touch. Do your part and the matters will fizzle out of court.

 

High rise of food stuff and sundry matters

Whatever, you have in your arsenal to ensure stability of prices of those things that affect common men should be deployed right now. The cliché says, an hungry man, is an angry man.

 

The nation is getting restive.  There is no saying what it may lead to. Spending funds meant for two weeks within five days is taking its toil on people. If it is not the price of petrol, it would be price of rice. Control the key ones and the rest would fall into place.

 

Tinker with fluctuation of dollars and the rest will found their real level. But the price of oil and its availability are indices the nation will use in judging your administration. If you claim the preceding administration was corrupt and the product was available at constant price during that administration, then you are already having your score card. The change mantra has changed the populace lives negatively.

 

Unemployment

This, perhaps, is the one area that needs serious attention. I am not privy to the unemployment statistics of the nation but what I see in my area is heart rending. You could see able bodied men begging for food, not because they are lazy, but because there are no work for them. Some of them could be seen running after parked vehicles demanding to be selected for menial or domestic daily jobs to no avail. Few of them are graduates!

 

The restiveness of youth is not something a nation should toy with. Mr. President and honourable members of the Executive, think fast, act fast. What went through the Arab spring is still fresh in people’s memory.

 

Like I wrote some weeks ago, bad policies have made some youths and adults alike to be stealing goats and poultry in the State of Osun. Such policies should be dispensed with and multiple taxation abolished. It was no wonder that the police arrested a vehicle with 14 stolen goats. An hungry man will improvise. The man took to his heels. One of our dear readers had reacted when we wrote the piece rabble rousers that at her place at Owode Ede, thieves come with vehicles to cart away goats in their tens. She said on a particular incident over 25 goats were missing. Effect of bad policy.  Not all of us can continuously stay by the side of the law.

 

See you next Tuesday

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